30th Jul, 2015By Softmints6 minutes

Just about every commercial MOBA shares the same victory condition of "destroy the enemy base". Isn't there anything that could be done to introduce some variety?

Before we begin, the word MOBA is used more inclusively by some people than others, so for clarification we need to divide the answer into two cases: lane-pushing games, and arenas.

2nd Jul, 2015By Softmints
Hi folks, just leaving a note to say that I've got plenty of content queued up, but have been busy with another project recently. There should be a double-feature over the next two weeks to make up for lost time. EDIT: Circumstances have decided otherwise, it'll be ready "when it's ready" :/
14th May, 2015By Softmints8 minutes

Welcome back for Part 2 of the Dota Outland review; check out Part 1 if you're not up to date. We'll resume going through the enormous list of map features...

Jump Pads:

This silly little feature allows units to jump down certain cliffs, as a one-way ticket to enter a lane. It was intended to help a team defending their base to initiate fights from an unlikely angle, without also giving the attacking team a route into the base.

7th May, 2015By Softmints
While writing the Tides of Blood review a few months ago, I found that screenshots simply weren't doing enough to convey the mechanics that I wanted to talk about. This led me to try recording some gifs, which turned out to be a great solution and a great way to make the material more engaging in general. One of the things I have struggled with while writing reviews has been discussing heroes, particularly for maps where painstaking attention to hero design was a hallmark of the game. Hero design is a deep topic on which I have many opinions, and it isn't something I want to delve into in every review. But, with video content, now the heroes can speak for themselves. Over the coming months, I will be revisiting and updating several reviews which I feel were sorely missing appreciation of their heroes, notably Advent of the Zenith and Age of Myths. To keep the site mobile-friendly, I am not embedding video directly, but linking instead. If you have any feedback about video content, or anything else, feel free to contact me or leave a comment below.
7th May, 2015By Softmints8 minutes

Just before the Frozen Throne expansion was released in July 2003, Eul's Defence of the Ancients was easily among the most popular maps on Battle.net. But it was also a rare example of a map that didn't have tons of clones, since it was made using non-standard tools that made editing it difficult.

26th Mar, 2015By Softmints6 minutes

The Legend of Sand is one of the most distinctive AoS concepts out there. It taps into ideas from a variety of other genres, and while the result lacks refinement, it's certainly an interesting experience. The game depicts the tale of two early settlements on an island called Sand, and how they wrestle to take control of the island by securing and exploiting its natural resources.

5th Feb, 2015By Softmints6 minutes

Continuing from Part 1...


Dawngate's approach to items is a well-considered one. There are three categories of item: Basic items can upgrade into 2-5 possible Advanced items, each of which can upgrade into 2-4 possible Legendary items. Naturally, upgraded items carry the bonuses of their components, as well as gaining new stats and abilities.

29th Jan, 2015By Softmints8 minutes

For the first time, I've decided to review a commercial lane-pushing game: Dawngate. It presents itself with the goal of usurping the "meta" that's supposedly been a menace in other genre-games, and in practice aims to refine the wildly successful League of Legends formula.

It implements a number of decisive design choices, many of which are ambitious and well-motivated. The game also earned a positive reputation for its emphasis on lore, with elaborate character introductions and the community participating in a supplementary webcomic.